Properly taken care of, your trailer ought to last you for years, if not decades. However, this proper care requires regular and appropriate maintenance, particularly during certain times of the year when your trailer is at more risk. To prolong the life of your trailer, follow a few maintenance tips as the winter months approach.
No matter whether you plan to store your trailer through the winter or continuing using it, give it a good cleaning on a regular basis. If you are storing it, you do not want dirt or moisture to lead to rust or corrosion. If you continue to use it, cleanliness prevents similar issues and promotes proper functioning of all moving parts.
As winter approaches, take care of any rust on your trailer to maintain structural integrity. To remove small deposits, sand them off or use a wire brush. If you have a larger area of rust, it is sometimes necessary to cut away a piece and weld in a replacement. Pay particular attention to joints and to the area where the floor meets side rails or posts. If you have an aluminum trailer, remember that the axles and the tongue are probably steel and need attention for the same reason.
If you are storing your trailer, you need to take a few additional measures. Unused tires degrade and flatten. Coat your tires in rubber protectant, and move the trailer every couple weeks to turn the tires. Cover your trailer with a tarp to protect it from the elements.
If you put your trailer in storage through the winter, follow the appropriate tips to make sure it is in good condition when spring arrives. If you continue to use it through the colder months, temperature extremes, winter weather and road conditions put the trailer at risk of falling into disrepair, so make sure you do preventative maintenance.